Well, we had a rather relaxed final week in Sydney, saying goodbye to friends and family. We managed to fit in an excellent visit to see the 'Wildlife Photographer of the Year' exhibition with Lucy (which is something of a family tradition). The photographs were amazing, and I think the winner deserved the title! On a sillier note, the exhibition included a play area to keep the kids entertained, which included some awesome animal costumes:
Stu was especially delighted by this little number:
After the exhibition Stu and I took off to stay with Tony and Glenys in Normanhurst for a final few days. It was great to see them, and I took the chance to go to a nearby book publisher for three days work experience which was very useful indeed. It was fun to play at being a Sydney commuter for a few days!
Having said goodbye to Stu's family, we headed out to the beautiful suburb of Lugarno, where Stu's friend Rew lives with his girlfriend Gemma. They invited us (and Peter and Lucy) round for a yummy BBQ, including amazing homemade veggie burgers for me! Their dog Millie was an endless source of friendly cuddles:
After an evening of fine wines, we surfaced the next day feeling a little worse for wear. But Millie cuddled us back to health, and we had a lazy morning reading the Sunday papers on the balcony overlooking the river (how civilised!), swimming, and taking Millie for a walk:
On our final day in Sydney, Lucy, Stu and I attempted a coastal walk in wonderfully-named suburb of Manly, north of the harbour. However, due to tardiness and rain (mostly tardiness), we never really made it. We took a lovely ferry ride across the harbour to Manly, and took a stroll to Manly Beach (which makes me chuckle every time). From most vantage points Sydney Harbour appears to be enclosed by land on all sides, but from Manly you can see the headlands where the enormous harbour opens out to the sea.
Lucy and me messing about with the headlands in the background:
We did manage to squeeze in a visit to a shop called 'Chocoloate by the Bald Man', where we shared a chocolate pizza topped with caramelised pecans, banana and marshmallows!:Feeling a bit sick, we did walk along some of the Manly coast and had a paddle in the sea, before admitting defeat and heading back to Coogee. Our final boat trip across the harbour was lovely, and we savoured our last glimpses of the iconic harbour bridge and opera house.
We arrived in New Zealand yesterday and are currently staying in Auckland. Really like it here so far!